Ott Tanak and Hyundai have confirmed that the Estonian will return to the squad for 2024 WRC and rejoin Thierry Neuville in the i20N Rally1 team.
Ott Tanak will once again pair with Thierry Neuville and race for Hyundai Motorsport in 2024 after the 2019 World Rally champion reached an agreement with the Alzenau-based team.
Tanak’s return demonstrates Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team’s dedication to the WRC in 2024 and brings together two of the team’s top-performing crews.
Hyundai Motorsport has made it clear that it intends to compete at the pinnacle of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) in 2024 by fielding Thierry Neuville and Ott Tänak as part of its lineup for the upcoming season.
The 2019 WRC champion had a challenging year after switching to the Ford M-Sport team from Hyundai despite winning two rallies in Sweden and Chile. As a result of persistent issues and too many retirements, the Estonian has decided to return to the team he believes can help him return to the top of the rankings.
Tanak won nine races with Hyundai after leaving Toyota, and despite reports that his relationship with Neuville was not ideal, he’s returned to drive the i20N for an unspecified period of time with co-driver Martin Jarveoja.
“I am excited to re-join Hyundai Motorsport from the 2024 WRC season,”Ott Tänak said. “Since our paths parted exactly one year ago, the team has been working very hard on the new technical structure.
“Hyundai Motorsport has a clear vision and target for the near future, and it is something that convinced me to join our forces again.
“I am also looking forward to work with Cyril Abiteboul and François-Xavier Demaison, as their experience and knowledge in motorsport is definitely a big advantage for the whole team.
“Our goal in this new chapter will be nothing less than to win all the three titles, and with the new structure of the team, we have all the tools needed to achieve it. Game on!”
Tänak returns to the team where he won five races in three seasons from 2020 with the goal of assisting Hyundai Motorsport in achieving even greater championship success. The Estonian was essential to the team’s successful defense of its manufacturers’ championship in 2020.
“Hyundai Motorsport exists to ultimately fight for rally wins and championship titles,” Hyundai Motorsport Team Principal Cyril Abiteboul said. “We want to be seen as a credible contender with the tools to do the job.
“That means the car, the organisation, and the driving talent.
“In exploring our options for 2024, I opened a discussion with Ott, who was excited by the renewed ambitions and structure that we are putting in place.
“We are pleased that he is ready to resume the unfinished business that he has with our team. I am confident that, in the right environment, Thierry and Ott can bring out the best in each other.
“With this pair of winning crews secured, we can take some time to strategically consider our full line-up for next season.”
Neuville, who has won 18 of the team’s 26 WRC races to date, has been an integral part of the lineup since Hyundai’s inaugural campaign in 2014. The team is still committed to the Belgian, who has helped the team win two manufacturers’ championships in 2019 and 2020.
The team’s dedication to the WRC is reaffirmed by Neuville and Tanak’s re-signing. The 2024 season will be a significant turning point in Hyundai’s history as the team celebrates 10 years after making its series debut.